Thursday, September 23, 2010

For God or With God?

The message in this video is as foundational as it is profound (in a back to the basics sort of way).

I use this video as an introduction because I believe it rightly defines the Christian life. The complete work accomplished in Jesus live, death, and resurrection restores our union with God. Resultantly, the Christian life should never be defined by what one does for God. It is always defined by the grace expressed through Jesus.

But we still have a life of growth ahead of us, living with God, ignitied by a purpose of magnificent and Divine proportions. If this growth is not defined by a need to perform for God, how should we understand it?

Spiritual formation, (Santification in theological terms, but my preferred laymens term being "Spirit-led formation") has never been given much air time in my life experience. I grew up with a strong sense of justification, but never had many opportunities to explore the "now what?" question. As a result of not asking the question, I was largely shaped by the current of the world around me.

By the time I was a young adult my life had become independent from the faith I professed. Through a series of events I found C.S. Lewis' Mere Christianity in my hands a light was shown into the depths of my being.

Since this point I aimlessly pursued Spirit-led formation, with the help at times by mentors who I am eternally grateful for. It was not until recently that I realized I had never really stepped back and evaluated what Spirit-led formation is.

I think I still have more questions then answers. But what was once blurry has began to take shape, and I have found great peace in this.


Milan said...

Not a very solid message. It sounds good in the title...and it could be a great message...but his way of supporting it is weak and dangerous. First, he too easily equates "remain as you are" to the students being frustrated with ongoing sin in their life....I know its not PC to say but God hates sin. Second the use of 1 Cor 7 is really out of was very clearly and specifically talking about marriage or not getting married.
In no way do I disagree with "are you for God or with God?" I would go about showing it in a different way...including attacking sin head on instead of going around it. To be with God we must do both (know His love and not strive to do things simply for Him...but "it is the kindness of God that leads to repentance" therefore we can't swing the pendulum too far the other way.

DK said...

The "remain as you are" quote really stands out to me a as thorn in the message too. I was giving him the benefit of the doubt on some of the subtleties because it's impossible to communicate a completely comprehensive theology in a nutshell.

And I think that's where I'm really focusing on the potential of it being a great message...

To me the big take away is that everything in the Christian starts in being with God. Especially as a leader, we have to be careful not to build up a sense of burden or guilt that in order to live the Christian live well, and find acceptance in the Body of Chris, I need to be doing things for God.

Out of a context of living with God an overflow of worship thanks wells up and a conviction to hate sin mounts.

DK said...

2 Corinthians 5 is great on this topic, especially the 2nd half.